After a three-month feeling-out period, Siberia Restaurant held its long-awaited grand opening last Tuesday night by treating over 40 hotel and tour agency executives to a sumptuous four-course dinner.
Appetizer was holodets, beef tongue with horseradish, and red caviar on bread. For the uninitiated, holodets is cold meat jelly.
Not one but two types of salad were also served—Vinigrette and Olivie. The former is a vegetarian salad with beets, the latter a potato salad with sliced ham and mixed boiled vegetables.
The main course included meat dumplings, Vareneki (ravioli with mashed potato cabbage), Kasha Boyarskaya (buckwheat with mushrooms and ham), Golubtsy (cabbage rolls stuffed with meat), and Chicken Kiev (chicken cutlet).
Dessert was Piriozhki, which is similar to a turnover with apple, potato, and cabbage filling, and Russian-style pancakes called Blini with honey and jam.
All throughout the dining experience, Siberia Restaurant’s waitstaff served refills of iced tea and Berry Morse, a non-alcoholic drink also called honey beer.
As if the $55 per plate meal wasn’t enough, Siberia also pulled out all the stops by flying in Russian cultural performer Anna Neverdovskaia from Vladivostok to host the event.
The statuesque Neverdovskaia enchanted everyone and even cajoled a few to take part in unique parlor games, which included Russian roulette. However, instead of revolvers, participants were given eggs, with one supposedly raw.
As an added treat, Siberia Restaurant also served black caviar, which is a $99 item on the menu.
Siberia Restaurant operations manager Kayoko “Kay” Irinaka said the grand opening also gave the restaurant an opportunity to introduce its revamped menu, which gives locals and tourists alike a sample of the restaurant’s offerings by lumping together dishes that complement each other.
Set A, for instance, pairs Vinaigrette Salad with Siberia Borsch and Meat Pelmini. Set B includes layered beets and herring salad, which is called Shuba, Ukha-fish soup, and Golubtsy. Olivie, Solyanka soup, and Beef Stroganoff with mashed potato make up Set C.
Irinaka said the new menu sets range in price from $20 to $28.
She said Emerald City LLC, which owns Siberia Restaurant and sister companies Jazz & Café Bar and Gift Shop, opened the Russian restaurant because the ever-increasing number of Russian tourists on Saipan.
Aside from an authentic dining experience, Irinaka said the restaurant was also built to mimic a Russian log cabin, complete with a traditional fireplace and animal skins hanging on the walls.
Siberia Restaurant is located on the second floor of the ABC Building across DFS Galleria, along Beach Road. It comfortably seats up to 50 guests and is open from 10am to 11pm daily. For reservations, call 233-7733.